Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR)

Measure of an animal’s efficiency at converting feed to increased body mass.


The chemical breakdown of a substance, e.g silage, by microorganisms such as bacteria, yeast and fungi in the absence of oxygen. Various sugars are broken down by the fermentation process to a variety of end products, usually acids, gases and alcohols. Reaction also produces heat.

Fescue toxicosis

A toxic reaction in the body of animals that have ingested tall fescue infected with endophytes that produce the toxin ergovaline. Tall fescue is a major forage grass found in America in central and south-eastern states. In cattle signs of fescue toxicosis include low conception rates, low milk production, reduced weight gain, hyperthermia in the summer.

Field fungi

Fungi that invade the crop while it is still in the field (pre-harvest). These fungi include the Fusarium species and some Aspergillus species. They generally require higher moisture levels than storage fungi.


Feedstuffs given to livestock, usually hay, straw, silage or concentrates.


Plants, other than grain, grown to be fed to livestock.


Mycotoxins that are classified as non-trichothecence mycotoxins, produced by Fusarium moulds. Common fumonisins include fumonisin B1, fumonisin B2 and fumonisin B3, with fumonisin B1 being the most common. A wide range of crops can be contaminated with fumonisins, including maize, barley and wheat.

Fusaric acid

A non-trichothecence mycotoxin produced by many Fusarium moulds. Alters brain chemistry in pigs and acts synergistically with DON.

Fusarium sp.

Moulds most commonly found contaminating crops in the field (pre-harvest). Fusarium moulds produce a range of different mycotoxins when stressed and are capable of contaminating a range of different crops.